A pyramid of light beneath the clouds.

Like any one of us, the tiny boat

Marks out a course beneath the sky -

Vast columns of light, demolished by gloom -

And a leaden expanse, the unmarked time

We memorialise, give value to.

Like any one of us? There is darkness

In the upper field and the sun that lights the sail,

So far away, throws a shadow...

Absurdly tall, my darker self -

Becoming indistinct - reaches behind me.

Already, to your backward glance,

The land looks like a cloud -

Low on the horizon - a drowned depth.

Sae Wylfyng - oh she-wolf-cub -

You are all at sea again. Ellen MacArthur,

Our Ellen of the Waves,

Weeping in the wind that shapes the sail -

Like feeling shapes a word, giving it form,

And edge, a shadow and a tone.

How can you be fted? Death, or the spirit

Of the storm, looking over your shoulder,

Has already said it all. And death sailed a ship

From Sutton How into the underworld.

You know the movement of the hull - that lover

Beneath you - as you guide her

Through the long tunnel of clouds,

The high and roaring gale,

Back to the haven of her mooring -

Her berthing - where she sleeps your sleep.

Karen Eliot, Highfield,


Highly Commended